At the recent 39th NFRW Biennial Convention held in Philadelphia, the MFRW received the Betty Heitman Award for State Excellence. This is a highly coveted award given to those states that demonstrate excellence, achievement and accomplishments in Community Relations, Programs, Campaign Activities and State Functions.
Betty Green Heitman (November 27, 1929 – February 1, 1994) was a Republican activist from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, who was from 1978 to 1980 the president of the National Federation of Republican Women. During her tenure, the organization achieved financial independence from the Republican National Committee in Washington, D.C. She also prodded U.S. Presidents Ronald W. Reagan and George Herbert Walker Bush to appoint more women to executive government offices.
As the president of the National Federation of Republican Women, Heitman worked to establish two schools for training within the organization, one for campaign management and the other for political polling. The NFRW established in her honor the biennial Betty Heitman Award for State Excellence. All of the NFRW presidents rose from the ranks of state federations. From 1996 to 1997, another Louisiana Republican, Marilyn Thayer of New Orleans, served as the NFRW president.
After her NFRW presidency, Heitman was from 1983 to 1987 the co-chairwoman of the Republican National Committee under chairman Frank J. Fahrenkopf, Jr., during the administration of Ronald Reagan. Considered a conservative Republican, she was Reagan’s choice for committee co-chair. In 1983, as the party co-chairwoman, Heitman convened meetings of female party activists in a program called “Target ’80s” to encourage candidates to seek office in 1984, when Reagan would be running for a second term as president. At a leadership forum in Philadelphia, she said, ” I feel we have not done as good a job as we could to arm our women leaders with as much information as they need at the grassroots level. We hope these meetings will help them gear up for the 1984 campaign.”
After her party co-chairmanship, Reagan appointed Heitman in 1987 to succeed Kenneth Duberstein on the Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad. She was also designated as the chairman of the commission.
During the administration of U. S. President George Herbert Walker Bush, Heitman was a member of the Committee on Executive Exchange, which sought to enhance relations between business and government with an exchange of executives. When that effort was abandoned in 1991, Heitman returned to Baton Rouge.
While in Washington, D.C., and residing mostly in Arlington, Virginia, she established her own consulting firm, the Heitman Group, which lobbied on behalf of international marketing interests, among other interests.
(Source – Wikipedia)